by Diana Childress
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
The Negro Speaks of Rivers
- Langston Hughes
The speaker in this famous Langston Hughes poem uses symbolism to explain the connection they feel between their ancestry and identity.Pair “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” with “Lasting Contributions” to provide students with a poem about a speaker’s connection to the past. Ask students to discuss what aspects of the past the speaker feels connected to. How are these aspects tied to culture? According to “Lasting Contributions,” how did Africans remain connected to their past and culture? Why do students think they chose these methods? How did these methods help to preserve African culture like the speaker does in “The Negro Speaks of Rivers”?
The Harlem Renaissance
- Jessica McBirney
In the informational text “The Harlem Renaissance,” Jessica McBirney discusses how the movement developed and the effect it had on America.Pair “The Harlem Renaissance” with “Lasting Contributions” to provide students with information about the cultural and artistic movement known as the Harlem Renaissance. How did slavery in the Americas lead to the creation of the Harlem Renaissance? How do both texts demonstrate the impact of African culture on America? How was reading and writing important to that impact?
Francisco Menéndez: An Unsung Hero
- Jane Landers
In the informational text “Francisco Menéndez: An Unsung Hero,” Jane Landers discusses the life and accomplishments of the African American colonial hero Francisco Menéndez.Pair “Lasting Contributions” with “Francisco Menéndez: An Unsung Hero” to provide students with information about how Africans who were brought to the Americas influenced the culture and history. Ask students to discuss the lasting impact that Menéndez has had on American history. How does Fort Mose show the lasting effect that people of African descent have had on the Americas?
Let Them Speak
- Richard J. Boles
In the informational text “Let Them Speak,” Richard J. Boles provides the accounts of slaves, traders, and observers of the Atlantic slave trade.Pair “Lasting Contribution” with “Let Them Speak” to provide students with information about the lasting impacts of the slave trade. Ask students to discuss the traditions and practices that Africans brought to the Americas. How did African enrich America’s culture? What did Africans lose, or have taken from them, when they were brought to America?
From Africa to America
- Eric Arnesen
In the informational text “From Africa to America,” Eric Arnesen discusses the transportation of Africans to America to work as slaves.Pair “From Africa to America” With “Lasting Contributions” to provide students with additional information about how Africans were brought to America. Ask students to discuss what factors led to an increased demand in the slave trade. What are some of the cruelties involved in the journey to the Americas? How would W.E.B. Du Bois respond to the idea that preserving African culture was a survival strategy for enslaved people in the Americas?